I am an unabashed Steve Taylor fan.
Wow to the Deadness (EP)
Artist: Steve Taylor & the Danielson Foil
I am an unabashed Steve Taylor fan. I have never been a fan of Danielson, in whatever incarnation. My first thought, without even listening to Wow to the Deadness, is that it would be not enough Steve and too much Danielson. That said, it’s Steve Taylor. I ponied up the money for the Kickstarter campaign, and waited for the results.
Produced by Steve Albini (Nirvana, et al.), the EP is six songs of raw, almost primal punk compositions, definitely rougher in form than Goliath. The marriage of the two styles is hit and miss, but further examination reveals some death in lyrics and a few of the sly lines we’ve come to expect from Taylor. “Nonchalant” is the track the will recall his most recent work.
The title track features Danielson’s background vocals, which to me resemble Tiny Tim. “Wait Up Dubstep” depicts the futility and frustration of trying to do things on our own:
“You stretch me with a smile
While I eat this humble pie
The warfare that’s between my ears
I sweat it out while you cheer.”
“The Dust Patrol” warns against forming impressions simply on glib words and outward appearances. “A Muse” focuses on a seeming co-dependency. “Drats” poses the question of when it is better to walk away versus beginning again.
Jimmy Abegg’s guitars blaze throughout, and John Mark Painter on various instruments is invaluable as usual. Taylor’s somewhat nasal vocals always fit well to the music. So, too much Danielson? For me, a little, yeah.
Brian A. Smith
8 April 2016